The Best Camera Tripods in 2021

The Best Camera Tripods in 2021

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Let’s take a mental journey, shall we? You’ve spent all day hiking through the woods to reach this one spot where the sunsets are so majestic, that they last all of thirty seconds and then they are gone till the next day. You get to the summit, pull out your camera and take a picture that ends up blurry because you were breathing heavy while taking the picture.

Now imagine that same scenario but with a tripod for your camera.

Clear pictures without any human error issues. There is a really big reason why professionals use tripods so we sought to find the Best Camera Tripods in 2021 so that beautiful photo comes out perfect every time.

Do you know what the characteristics of a tripod are? Let’s start there.

The Best Camera Tripods in 2021

Having the right tripod for your camera can make all the difference when you are shooting photos or video. The stability that a tripod offers is second to none. With our list of the best tripods in 2021, we feel that we’re brought together the best of the best. Keep reading below to read our reviews!

  1. Manfrotto 190XPro4 The best tripod overall (Editor’s Choice)
  2. Benro Travel Angel FTA28AB1 — The best travel tripod
  3. MeFoto GlobeTrotter A2350Q2 — The best ‘packs small’ tripod
  4. Benro Mach3 TMA28AHD2A — The best compact tripod
  5. Sirui NT-1005X/E-10 — The best for value and quick setup 
  6. Manfrotto 290 Dual MK290DUA3-BH — The best large tripod
  7. Joby GorillaPod 1K — The best flexible and budget tripod

The Best Camera Tripods in 2021 Compared

Thumbnail
Best Overall
Manfrotto MT190XPRO4 Aluminum 4-Section Tripod ,Black
Best Packs Small
MeFOTO GlobeTrotter Classic 64.2" Aluminum Travel Tripod/Monopod w/Case, Twist Locks, Triple Action...
Best Value and Light-Weight
SIRUI 5-Section Classic Tripod Aluminum NT-1005X with Powerful E-10 Ball Head
Best Large
Manfrotto MT290DUA3US Dual Aluminum 3-Section Tripod ,Black
Best Budget and Flexible
JOBY Gorillapod 1K Stand. Lightweight Flexible Tripod 1K Stand for Mirrorless Cameras or Devices Up...
Best Compact
Benro Mach3 1 Series Aluminum Tripod (TMA18A)
Title
Manfrotto MT190XPRO4 Aluminum 4-Section Tripod ,Black
MeFOTO GlobeTrotter Classic 64.2" Aluminum Travel Tripod/Monopod w/Case, Twist Locks, Triple Action...
SIRUI 5-Section Classic Tripod Aluminum NT-1005X with Powerful E-10 Ball Head
Manfrotto MT290DUA3US Dual Aluminum 3-Section Tripod ,Black
JOBY Gorillapod 1K Stand. Lightweight Flexible Tripod 1K Stand for Mirrorless Cameras or Devices Up...
Benro Mach3 1 Series Aluminum Tripod (TMA18A)
Prime Status
-
-
-
Star Rating
Reviews
423 Reviews
391 Reviews
145 Reviews
73 Reviews
2,156 Reviews
457 Reviews
Material
Aluminium
Aluminium
Aluminium
Aluminium
ABS plastic, stainless steel
Aluminium
Leg Sections
4
5
5
3
Multiple
4
Max Load (legs/head)
10/7kg
12/12kg
10/8kg
5/6kg
1kg
8/8kg
Max Height (with head)
175cm
165cm
150cm
175cm
25.5cm
167cm
Folded Height
57cm
41cm
36cm
69cm
N/A
60cm
Weight (with head)
2.6kg
2.1kg
1.44kg
2.28kg
196g
2.42kg
Price
$399.00
$244.63
$149.90
$279.95
$25.07
Price not available
Best Overall
Thumbnail
Manfrotto MT190XPRO4 Aluminum 4-Section Tripod ,Black
Title
Manfrotto MT190XPRO4 Aluminum 4-Section Tripod ,Black
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
Reviews
423 Reviews
Material
Aluminium
Leg Sections
4
Max Load (legs/head)
10/7kg
Max Height (with head)
175cm
Folded Height
57cm
Weight (with head)
2.6kg
Price
$399.00
Buy Now
Best Packs Small
Thumbnail
MeFOTO GlobeTrotter Classic 64.2" Aluminum Travel Tripod/Monopod w/Case, Twist Locks, Triple Action...
Title
MeFOTO GlobeTrotter Classic 64.2" Aluminum Travel Tripod/Monopod w/Case, Twist Locks, Triple Action...
Prime Status
Star Rating
Reviews
391 Reviews
Material
Aluminium
Leg Sections
5
Max Load (legs/head)
12/12kg
Max Height (with head)
165cm
Folded Height
41cm
Weight (with head)
2.1kg
Price
$244.63
Buy Now
Best Value and Light-Weight
Thumbnail
SIRUI 5-Section Classic Tripod Aluminum NT-1005X with Powerful E-10 Ball Head
Title
SIRUI 5-Section Classic Tripod Aluminum NT-1005X with Powerful E-10 Ball Head
Prime Status
Star Rating
Reviews
145 Reviews
Material
Aluminium
Leg Sections
5
Max Load (legs/head)
10/8kg
Max Height (with head)
150cm
Folded Height
36cm
Weight (with head)
1.44kg
Price
$149.90
Buy Now
Best Large
Thumbnail
Manfrotto MT290DUA3US Dual Aluminum 3-Section Tripod ,Black
Title
Manfrotto MT290DUA3US Dual Aluminum 3-Section Tripod ,Black
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
Reviews
73 Reviews
Material
Aluminium
Leg Sections
3
Max Load (legs/head)
5/6kg
Max Height (with head)
175cm
Folded Height
69cm
Weight (with head)
2.28kg
Price
$279.95
Buy Now
Best Budget and Flexible
Thumbnail
JOBY Gorillapod 1K Stand. Lightweight Flexible Tripod 1K Stand for Mirrorless Cameras or Devices Up...
Title
JOBY Gorillapod 1K Stand. Lightweight Flexible Tripod 1K Stand for Mirrorless Cameras or Devices Up...
Prime Status
Star Rating
Reviews
2,156 Reviews
Material
ABS plastic, stainless steel
Leg Sections
Multiple
Max Load (legs/head)
1kg
Max Height (with head)
25.5cm
Folded Height
N/A
Weight (with head)
196g
Price
$25.07
Buy Now
Best Compact
Thumbnail
Benro Mach3 1 Series Aluminum Tripod (TMA18A)
Title
Benro Mach3 1 Series Aluminum Tripod (TMA18A)
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
Reviews
457 Reviews
Material
Aluminium
Leg Sections
4
Max Load (legs/head)
8/8kg
Max Height (with head)
167cm
Folded Height
60cm
Weight (with head)
2.42kg
Price
Price not available
Buy Now

 

Characteristics of the Common Tripod

Tripods are generally made with seven different components. Knowing and understanding the meaning and difference between them can make shopping for a tripod that much easier.

The seven characteristics of a tripod are:

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Collapsed size

The collapsed size of a tripod is how it measures once it has been closed up. If you’re traveling and need to take the tripod with you in a bag, knowing this information will let you know if it will fit.

Size

Otherwise known as maximum height extension, this is how tall the tripod will stand when fully opened up and the center post is raised as high as it can go.

Load capacity

Weight and Load Capacity are two different things, even though they may seem similar. The weight is of course how much the tripod weighs and the Load Capacity is the weight that the tripod can support a camera and lens combination without worry that the risk of the tripod falling over and breaking the camera will occur. Knowing how much your gear weighs can help before you start shopping for a tripod.

Head type

The head of the tripod sits on the center column which is a tube that can be raised and lowered using either a hand crank or through the use of a locking collar.

Feet

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The feet on a tripod can come in a few different variations for the different environments that you may be shooting in. Rubber non-slip feet are mainly used for indoor shooting, while spike feet are the best option for shooting outdoors as the spikes plant the tripod in the ground. There are also custom options with some tripods which can be anything including the use of ball-bearings.

Leg locks

Typically, leg locks come in two versions: Twist; where you twist the leg to pull it out, twist it in reverse to lock it in place and Lever, where you would open a lever to pull a leg out and then close it to lock it out.

Common material

Tripods are made in many different materials these days including plastic which isn’t very durable and inexpensive. Aluminum which is the most commonly used material is also inexpensive but can add a lot of weight to heavy-duty tripods.

Carbon fiber is a relatively new material that is being used and can is durable, lightweight, and flexible but at the same time, is not cheap. Finally, there are tripods made of wood. These are typically used by nature photographers that are carrying around large-format cameras.

Top 11 Best Camera Tripods in 2021


1. Manfrotto 190XPro4 (Editor’s Choice)

Manfrotto MT190XPRO4

The best tripod overall

Material: Aluminium | Leg sections: 4 | Max load (legs/head): 10/7kg | Max height (with head): 175cm | Folded height: 57cm | Weight (with head): 2.6kg

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The 190XPro4 from Manfrotto is a full-sized tripod that’s able to reach a full operating height of 68 inches and then shrinks down to a modest size of 22 inches. The 90-degree pivot is quick and easy, letting you switch to horizontal boom mode in mere seconds.

A four-way, multi-angle leg lock system helps keep the tripod sturdy while the ball head comes with an adjustable friction damper and pan-only release. While it can be a bit pricey, it is a high-quality tripod that can help fill all of your needs.

This camera tripod has some weight to it that ensures your camera stays steady and grounded even in windy conditions, which can be very handy when shooting outdoors. With its easy and quick-to-set-up build and versatility, it’s without a doubt the best tripod for most situations.

Pros Cons
➕ Sturdy build ensures steadiness ➖ Slightly heavy
➕ Has versatile settings — center column can be extended out 90°
➕ Easy and quick to set up

 

Manfrotto MT190XPRO4 Aluminum 4-Section Tripod ,Black
423 Reviews
Manfrotto MT190XPRO4 Aluminum 4-Section Tripod ,Black
  • Solid and fast set up with the new Quick Power Lock System
  • Easy Link plug for instant accessory connections
  • Built in rotating bubble level
  • Q90 Column for great positioning possibilities
  • New leg angle selectors

 

2. Benro Travel Angel FTA28AB1

Benro Travel Angel FTA28AB1
Benro Travel Angel FTA28AB1. Image credit: Benro / Amazon

The best travel tripod

Material: Aluminium | Leg sections: 4 | Max load (legs/head): 10/14kg | Max height (with head): 161cm | Folded height: 45cm | Weight (with head): 2.42kg

When you’re traveling for your job, having a tripod that is easy to get around with is a priority. With the Travel Angel from Benro, the tripod collapses to a minuscule 17 inches. With a weight of just under five pounds, carrying this through the airport isn’t such a headache.

Once you’re up and running, the max height of this tripod reaches a respectable height of 63 inches. Although the load capacity for the legs and head are 22 and 30 pounds respectively. This helps the tripod feel sturdy even when you have a heavy DSLR and long telephoto lens attached.

Between the build strength and the quality, the Travel Angel should be your travel buddy for a long time.

Pros Cons
➕ Easily fits in luggage while traveling ➖ Could be sturdier when fully extended
➕ Good build quality
➕ Can easily be used as a monopod

 

Benro Travel Angel 2 Series Aluminum Tripod w/ B1 Ball Head (FTA28AB1)
59 Reviews
Benro Travel Angel 2 Series Aluminum Tripod w/ B1 Ball Head (FTA28AB1)
  • Designed to offer compact and lightweight camera support. Weighing just 4.6 lbs. and able to hold up to 22 lbs., the FTA28AB1 can extend from a minimum height of 17.9" up to 62.8".
  • The 4-section legs are held in place by twist locks and can be adjusted independently.
  • Equipped with interchangeable screw-in rubber feet and stainless steel spiked feet for increased stability. In addition, a removable leg can be combined with the center column to create a full-size...
  • The B1 Ball Head has separate pan and ball locks, and an Arca-type compatible clamp with a quick-release plate.
  • Limited 3-Year Warranty (Extended to 5-Years with Online Registration).

 

3. MeFoto GlobeTrotter A2350Q2

MeFoto GlobeTrotter A2350Q2
MeFoto GlobeTrotter A2350Q2. Image credit: MeFotto / Amazon

The best ‘packs small’ tripod

Material: Aluminium | Leg sections: 5 | Max load (legs/head): 12/12kg | Max height (with head): 165cm | Folded height: 41cm | Weight (with head): 2.1kg

The GlobeTrotter line from MeFoto is the biggest and most heavy-duty option in their ‘Classic’ tripod offerings. Available in different colors as well as a carbon fiber option, the GlobeTrotter folds down to 16 inches, making it a great option to take on the go.

The tripod stays sturdy at its full height of 64 inches, even with the thinnest areas of the leg sections having a diameter of half an inch. One of the legs can be removed to create a monopod, a great option if you’re shooting video or vlogging.

While there isn’t a pivot function or secondary short center column, it does come packaged with interchangeable metal spikes and rubber pads, along with a padded soft case.

Pros Cons
➕ Good value for money ➖ Slightly pricey
➕ The most compact tripod on this list
➕ Comes with travel case
➕ Can be used as a monopod

 

MeFOTO GlobeTrotter Classic 64.2' Aluminum Travel Tripod/Monopod w/Case, Twist Locks, Triple Action...
391 Reviews
MeFOTO GlobeTrotter Classic 64.2" Aluminum Travel Tripod/Monopod w/Case, Twist Locks, Triple Action...
  • The MeFOTO GlobeTrotter is a compact travel camera tripod that folds up inversely and turns into a monopod. When incorporated with the MeFOTO SideKick iPhone tripod mount (not included), the...
  • 360-degree Panning: Accurate panoramas can be easily orchestrated using the graduated panning scale for accurate image alignment. Two Leg Angle Positions: For an extra measure of flexibility, tripod...
  • Recessed Center-Column Hook: A spring loaded recessed hook, located in the bottom of the center-column, allows you to hang additional weight from the tripod's center of gravity for increased...
  • Precision Matched Q Series Ballhead: Dual action heavy-duty ballhead with Arca-Swiss style compatible quick release plate. Integral Bubble Level: Allows adjustment to prevent uneven pans and head...
  • Five Leg Sections: Get the height you need and ultimate versatility. Twist Lock Legs with Anti-Rotation System: MeFOTO's innovative rubberized locking grips combined with anti-rotation legs enable...

 

4. Benro Mach3 TMA28AHD2A

Benro Mach3 TMA28AHD2A
Benro Mach3 TMA28AHD2A. Image credit: Benro / Amazon

The best compact tripod

Material: Aluminium | Leg sections: 4 | Max load (legs/head): 8/8kg | Max height (with head): 167cm | Folded height: 60cm | Weight (with head): 2.42kg

Unlike the Travel Angel, which we featured above, the Mach3 legs don’t swing up for compact storage but with the Mach3, Benro aims to keep things simple by combining a conventional feature set with high-grade materials.

Provided with interchangeable metal spikes and rubber pads for feet, the Mach3 gives you the option of using it as a monopod by unscrewing one of the legs. Thanks to its design, the four-leg section tripod folds down to a compact 23 inches and the triple-angle facility for the legs is a breeze to operate. At maximum height, the Mach3 provides excellent stability and the solid build quality all add up to a high-quality tripod.

Pros Cons
➕ Great price ➖ Can’t be used as a monopod
➕ Comes with metal spikes and rubber pads for its legs to ensure stability 
➕ Comes in different variants to suit your requirements 
➕ Solid build

 

Benro Mach3 1 Series Aluminum Tripod (TMA18A)
457 Reviews
Benro Mach3 1 Series Aluminum Tripod (TMA18A)
  • Allows the user to implement compact and lightweight camera support. Weighing just 3.2 lbs. and able to hold up to 17.6 lbs., the TMA18A can extend from a minimum height of 11.8" up to 56.9".
  • The 4-section legs are held in place by twist locks and can be adjusted independently.
  • Equipped with interchangeable screw-in rubber feet and stainless steel spiked feet for increased stability. In addition, a removable leg can be combined with the center column to create a full-size...
  • A 3/8"-16 thread on top of the tripod allows you to attach any compatible tripod head of your choice.
  • Limited 3-Year Warranty (Extended to 5-Years with Online Registration).

 

5. Sirui NT-1005X/E-10

Sirui NT-1005X/E-10
Sirui NT-1005X/E-10. Image credit: Sirui / Amazon

The best for value and quick setup 

Material: Aluminium | Leg sections: 5 | Max load (legs/head): 10/8kg | Max height (with head): 150cm | Folded height: 36cm | Weight (with head): 1.44kg

The NT-1005X from Sirui is a great tripod when it comes down to collapsing and folding it for storage, but that isn’t why it made our list. Setting up the tripod is quick and easy with its non-slip feet and the ball head with its Arca-Swiss compatible quick-release plate.

 Making adjustments is smooth and easy and lock solidly. The legs can be locked at three alternative angles and although the maximum height is a little lacking, the carrying size makes up for it and makes the NT-1005X/E-10 a very desirable tripod.

Pros Cons
➕ Good price ➖ Slightly on the shorter side
➕ Easy and quick to set up
➕ Comes with non-slip feet
➕ Versatile to use and easy to adjust

 

SIRUI 5-Section Classic Tripod Aluminum NT-1005X with Powerful E-10 Ball Head
145 Reviews
SIRUI 5-Section Classic Tripod Aluminum NT-1005X with Powerful E-10 Ball Head
  • Model: NT-1005X | Color: Black | Material: Aluminum | Weight: 2. 6lbs (Tripod) + 0. 66lbs (Ball Head) | Max Load: 17. 6lbs
  • Functional characteristics: easy adjustment: 5-section column legs with twist leg locks enable you to adjust the working height from 14" To 55. 1" Instantly; The center column can be reversed for low...
  • Material characteristics: The whole kit only weighs 3. 26 lbs., So it is suitable for outdoor shooting
  • Excellent process: The tripod legs can be folded fatly in one press of leg angle locking button; The hook under the center column can be removed and used as an Allen key; The mounting screw is...

 

6. Manfrotto 290 Dual MK290DUA3-BH

Manfrotto 290 Dual MK290DUA3-BH
Manfrotto 290 Dual MK290DUA3-BH. Image credit: Manfrotto / Amazon

The best large tripod

Material: Aluminium | Leg sections: 3 | Max load (legs/head): 5/6kg | Max height (with head): 175cm | Folded height: 69cm | Weight (with head): 2.28kg

Compared to the other tripods on our list, the 290 Dual from Manfrotto has a much taller folded height at 68 inches. While that may seem like a cumbersome tripod to lug around, there are some benefits to be found here. There are only six flip locks on the tripod allowing you to set the tripod’s height much easier than some other’s on our list.

It comes with a 90-degree pivot facility that is easy to operate and incredibly quick. The price point for this tripod makes it worth a look and if you’re in the market for a large tripod, the 290 Dual from Manfrotto could be just what you need.

Pros Cons
➕ Comes with 90° pivot function ➖ Slightly awkward to lug around
➕ Easy and quick to operate
➕ Great height

 

Manfrotto MT290DUA3US Dual Aluminum 3-Section Tripod ,Black
73 Reviews
Manfrotto MT290DUA3US Dual Aluminum 3-Section Tripod ,Black
  • Premium Italian design
  • Adjustable aluminum Leg Locks
  • 90 degree column feature
  • Robust Aluminum Construction
  • 4 leg angles

 

7. Joby GorillaPod 1K

Joby GorillaPod 1K
Joby GorillaPod 1K. Image credit: Joby / Amazon

The best flexible and budget tripod

Main material: ABS plastic, stainless steel | Folded height (leg inversion): N/A | Weight: 196g | Max operating height: 25.5cm | Max load: 1kg | Sections per leg: Multiple | Locking leg angles: N/A

The GorillaPod 1K from Joby is a grippy mini-tripod that allows you to get angles you may normally not be able to. With its bendable legs that can wrap around objects, setting up interesting shots is fun.

 While the weight limit of 2.2 lbs is a little limiting, as long as you’re not trying to use pro DSLR and telephoto lens you should be good. Bunching the legs together also works as a great handgrip for on-the-spot videos or selfies.

Pros Cons
➕ Amazing price ➖ A bit small
➕ Great flexibility allows for unique shots ➖ Not suitable for heavier cameras
➕ Can function as a monopod or selfie stick

 

Sale
JOBY Gorillapod 1K Stand. Lightweight Flexible Tripod 1K Stand for Mirrorless Cameras or Devices Up...
2,156 Reviews
JOBY Gorillapod 1K Stand. Lightweight Flexible Tripod 1K Stand for Mirrorless Cameras or Devices Up...
  • Flexible: Wrappable legs allow you to secure professional camera equipment to virtually any surface
  • Versatile: Mount mirrorless cameras, flashes, speakers, video lights or any device weighing less than 1 kg (2.2 lbs) with a ¼"-20 tripod mount
  • Portable: Compact & lightweight for easy transport in pocket, handbag or backpack
  • Strong: Holds devices weighing up to 1 kg (2.2 lbs)

 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best camera tripod to buy?

We would highly recommend the Manfrotto 190XPro4 for its sturdy build that’s perfect for even heavier cameras.

What is the best budget tripod for cameras?

The Sirui NT-1005X/E-10 is the best budget tripod that has a reasonable height. If you’re looking for one with a smaller height range, the Joby GorillaPod 1K is the most affordable option.

Are Manfrotto tripods good?

Yes, Manfrotto offers some of the best affordable tripods on the market, including the Manfrotto 190XPro4 and the Manfrotto 290 Dual MK290DUA3-BH.

What is the best compact tripod?

The MeFOTO GlobeTrotter A2350Q2 is the most compact on our list.

What are the best travel tripods?

The Benro Travel Angel FTA28AB1 and the MeFOTO GlobeTrotter A2350Q2 are the best travel tripods.

What is a good, large tripod?

The Manfrotto 290 Dual MK290DUA3-BH is the best large tripod on our list.

How much are camera tripods?

When it comes to quality, good affordable builds usually cost between $200-$300. However, there are some reasonable options at less than $200 on the market.

What makes a good tripod?

For tripods, consistent steadiness is an essential quality. After this, height and flexibility are important factors and depend entirely on your intended use.

Do tripods work for all cameras?

No, some heavier cameras don’t work well with some camera stands. For those cameras, we would recommend the Manfrotto 190XPro4.

Do you need a tripod for landscape photography?

Absolutely! Even though you can take decent photography without one, having a tripod for landscape photography takes the steadiness and quality of your photos to a whole new level.

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The Best Camera Tripods of 2021

Using a tripod to shoot video or take pictures can go a long way in helping you become a professional in those fields. Knowing what the best tripod is to get you to that point is key and with our list of the Best Camera Tripods in 2021, we hope we’ve given you a pretty good place to start.

Do you have a tripod you love that’s not on our list? Let us know in the comments below!!

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